In an ongoing effort to assist prospective parents in finding hospitals that deliver quality, affordable maternity care, Excellus BlueCross BlueShield has announced that Crouse Health has been designated as a Blue Distinction Center+ for Maternity Care for the second consecutive year.
Crouse was one of the first hospitals in New York State to receive this designation in 2016. The Excellus Blue Distinction Specialty Care program is a national recognition program that selects healthcare facilities that demonstrate expertise in providing affordable specialty care safely and effectively, based on objective measures developed with input from the medical community. To receive a Blue Distinction Centers+ for Maternity Care designation, a hospital must also meet requirements for cost efficiency.
The goal of the program is to help consumers find both quality and value for their specialty care needs, while encouraging healthcare professionals to improve the overall quality and delivery of healthcare nationwide. Blue Cross and Blue Shield (BCBS) companies across the nation have recognized more than 650 hospitals as Blue Distinction Centers+ for Maternity Care. Hospitals recognized for these designations were assessed using a combination of publicly available quality information and cost measures derived from BCBS companies’ medical claims.
“As the region’s premier provider of maternity care, Crouse is proud to be recognized with Excellus BlueCross BlueShield’s Blue Distinction Center+ for Maternity Care designation” said Joan Dadey, director of women and infants services at Crouse. “We’re proud of the highly trained, experienced clinical staff and physicians who care for our mothers and their newborns – nearly 4,000 last year alone.” The hospital will hold a special celebration on Nov. 15 to thank the OB team for their dedication to the hospital’s mission of providing the best in patient care.
Nearly four million babies are born in the U.S. annually, making childbirth the most common cause of hospitalization. Only those facilities that first meet nationally established, objective quality measures for Blue Distinction Centers will be considered for designation as a Blue Distinction Center+.
Facilities are evaluated on objective, transparent Selection Criteria with quality, business, and cost of care components, which must be met to be eligible for a Blue Distinction Center+ designation. Hospitals of this designation support evidence-based practices of care, such as having initiated programs to promote successful breastfeeding, as described in the Baby-Friendly Hospital Initiative by Baby-Friendly USA or the Mother-Friendly Hospital program by the Coalition for Improving Maternity Services (CIMS) through its “Ten Steps of Mother-Friendly Care.” The program also evaluates hospitals on overall patient satisfaction, including a willingness to recommend the hospital to others.
Since 2006, the Blue Distinction Specialty Care program has helped patients find quality providers for their specialty care needs in the areas of bariatric surgery, cardiac care, complex and rare cancers, knee and hip replacements, spine surgery and transplants. Research shows that compared to other facilities, those designated as Blue Distinction Centers demonstrate better quality and improved outcomes for patients. On average, Blue Distinction Centers+ are also 20 percent more cost-efficient than non-Blue Distinction Center+ designated health care facilities.
For more information about the program, click here.
Excellus BlueCross BlueShield, a nonprofit independent licensee of the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association, is part of a family of companies that finances and delivers vital health care services to about 1.5 million people across upstate New York. Excellus BlueCross BlueShield provides access to high-quality, affordable health coverage, including valuable health-related resources that our members use every day, such as cost-saving prescription drug discounts and wellness tracking tools. To learn more, visit ExcellusBCBS.com.
About Blue Distinction Centers
Blue Distinction Centers (BDC) met overall quality measures for patient safety and outcomes, developed with input from the medical community. A Local Blue Plan may require additional criteria for facilities located in its own service area; for details, contact your Local Blue Plan. Blue Distinction Centers+ (BDC+) also met cost measures that address consumers’ need for affordable health care. Each facility’s cost of care is evaluated using data from its Local Blue Plan. Facilities in CA, ID, NY, PA, and WA may lie in two Local Blue Plans’ areas, resulting in two evaluations for cost of care; and their own Local Blue Plans decide whether one or both cost of care evaluation(s) must meet BDC+ national criteria. National criteria for BDC and BDC+ are displayed on bcbs.com. Individual outcomes may vary. For details on a provider’s in-network status or your own policy’s coverage, contact your Local Blue Plan and ask your provider before making an appointment. Neither Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association nor any Blue Plans are responsible for non-covered charges or other losses or damages resulting from Blue Distinction or other provider finder information or care received from Blue Distinction or other providers.